post thumbnail

The phrase ‘all your base are belong to us’ is well known to veteran gamers, those who enjoy their internet memes and regular readers of our blog alike. The text comes from the opening cut-scene to the Sega Mega Drive game ‘Zero Wing’. The game translations were on a par with the famous 19th century Portuguese to English phrase book ‘English as she is spoke’ which contains among other laughable literal translations as ‘raining in jars’ and ‘The stone as roll not heap up not foam’. The translations in Zero Wing were so awful that they are perhaps the only reason why the game is now remembered, and indeed even revered.

Zero Wing unfortunately was not the only game released to the English speaking market with terrible translations. A quick Google will bring up dozens of sites with examples equally hilarious and tragic. Some of these have earned the games a kitsch status but this is certainly not a marketing strategy I would recommend to game developers!

I have a confession to make and that is that I am a massive fan of the J-RPG (Japanese Role Playing Game) genre. Games such as Final Fantasy and Zelda were a treasured part of my childhood. I loved the epic storylines, the often dubious morality system which blur the usual boundaries between ‘good guys and bad guys’ and the odd chap that I am I am just the sort of person who likes to spend hours killing the same monster over and over!

If there is one thing which, in my mind, spoils a game it is a bad translation. It doesn’t have to be a translation error of Zero Wing scale to spoil a game. The phrase ‘I want to be a blitz ball’ from Final Fantasy X, whose dialogue was more or less competently translated, stands out. Even if the translation is technically competent very often the conversion of the dialogue is, well, cringe-worthy! It doesn’t sound as fluid or believable as it does in the original language.

As a huge fan of games in general and RPG’s in particular I cannot stress enough how important to us the consumer it is that developers take their translations seriously. RPG’s in particular with their long and involved plots, technology trees and massive number of unique items make for a challenging translation project, which makes it all the more important that a reputable translation company is employed that understands the industry and has a true passion for language.

Lingua Translations offers a Game Translation service and only employs those translators who have extensive experience of video game translation, who have a genuine passion for gaming and who specialise in their particular genre. Lingua Translations has that necessary passion for language and a passion for getting things right that can make the difference between a modern classic and a game which goes straight to the bargain bin! We will work with you to ensure that your game is a success and is remembered for all the right reasons and that your customers, no matter what language they speak, have the same fluid and immersive gaming experience!

by Scot Jenkins

disney-institute-lingua-translations 178 × 75
amazon-lingua-translations 120 × 28
procter-gamble - Lingua Translations 114 × 92
london-partners-lingua-translations 154 × 101
Swansea City | Lingua Translations 154 x 146
Man City | Lingua Translations 154 × 154
FC_Barcelona_(crest) 154 × 156
Star_Wars_Logo.svg_-1 1280 × 773
FiFA | lingua Translations 154 × 86
The-Score 232x120
M & S 271 × 186
Walmart-Lingua Translations 232 × 65
Welsh Government & Lingua Translations 400 × 400
Costco & Lingua Translations 232 × 155

 

TUI-Group Testimonial 205 × 46 EN

Ian Chapman – Director of Holiday Experience –

“Lingua Translations provides instant multi-lingual options for TUI’s 24/7 Holidayline, so 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year TUI’s customers are connected to an interpreter instantaneously. This service is designed to help holidaymakers who find themselves in difficulty and require non-English language assistance.

The service offered by Lingua Translations provides us with instant translation for every destination we travel to, and has proved invaluable.”

Roland Garros 2018- Useful Vocab!

The French open 2018 Roland Garros is almost here!     On the 21st May, some of the best will take to the clay courts to compete for the French Grand Slam title. Now, when it comes to clay, we’re always going to think it will be Rafael Nadal, but this year, who knows! Could …

Read More

Signing up a birth

Signing up a birth You might’ve seen my blog a few weeks ago about an Iranian couple who required an interpreter for the birth of their child. I’m sure anyone who has given birth or been a birth partner will say it is a scary and traumatic experience. You are hoping that everything runs as …

Read More
Get a quote today